Revisiting with a client her neglected artist/activist self, she describes this voice as ” the assertive, creative, expressive” voice. This one was punished as a child for her aliveness, her sense of play and mischief. Her parents, not happy and alive within their own lives, could not support nor even acknowledge their child’s aliveness. Sad story and too common. As a result, the little girl learned to protect herself, to hold back her joy and wonder and to eat for comfort. Trying to fill the emptiness is something that we do through food, drugs, alcohol, computers, sex, etc. However, the empty hole can only be filled by our love and by our presence. Acknowledging the shame, welcoming it in, and being tender towards it is the last thing that we thing of doing. However, this must be done in order to move through it and past it. When this client allowed herself this space to see and acknowledge the shame, she saw how alive she is underneath it. Over time, she can now let herself respond to the longing to be herself, to express herself, and to love life.